SEATTLE (AP) - A second police study of marijuana-use tickets in Seattle has found men and blacks are most likely to be ticketed.
The results were similar to the first study after pot was legalized in Washington state: men received about 90 percent of the tickets, and downtown parks are again popular places for officers to hand out tickets, the Seattle Times reported (https://is.gd/M0czWh).
The results of the police department’s study, which is required by city ordinance, will be discussed Monday morning during a City Council briefing.
Police issued 85 tickets, each of which carry a $27 penalty, from July 1, 2014, through the end of last year. Although blacks make up about 8 percent of Seattle’s population, they received about 27 percent of tickets issued. Forty-four tickets - more than half - were issued in downtown city parks.
Only about 9 percent of the tickets were paid, with 70 percent in default, according to the study.
All the tickets included in the police department’s first report were thrown out last year as part of a “reset effort” because a single policeman, Officer Randy Jokela, wrote the majority of them.
Last year, the tickets were written for the “wrong reasons,” Seattle Police Chief Kathleen O’Toole said.
Jokela was temporarily reassigned, but he returned to his bike patrol work in the Belltown and Queen Anne neighborhoods last August.
Although reports are due to the City Council every six months, it has been almost exactly a year since the police department’s first report.
Information from: The Seattle Times, https://www.seattletimes.com
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